Well, I’m about 2 months behind writing about my time in Europe, so I probably should try and catch up. Here’s episode 1 of a sporadicly updated N part series.
After a long, but relatively uneventful journey of 17,000 kilometers from Melbourne, we finally arrived in Sanremo. If you’re ever in the area, I highly recommend the train ride from Genova to Sanremo, it’s an hour and a half of picturesque seaside towns and rocky shores. If you just want to get to Sanremo quickly after 30-something hours of travel, remember to fly into Nice. A 1 hour train ride from Nice versus a 4+ hours from Milano is probably going to be a little more comfortable. We found our hotel easily, despite claims on some websites that it was impossible to find (the directions we were given were quite accurate). If you’re after somewhere clean, central and relatively inexpensive to stay, I can definitely recommend the Pollon Inn, which as we later discovered, is one of the handful of hotels in Sanremo with air-conditioning as well.
In somewhat related news, I think I’ll be happy if I never see the stretch of track between Genova and Milano again. We did a day trip to Milano to check out work/apartment options, combined with travel for ACLE (see upcoming posts), I’ve seen that hour of flat countryside more times than I care to remember.
In happier news, the ACLE training camp was an excellent experience. If you’re looking for a way to spend your mid-year break, ACLE is a very good option. Arriving for the start of training involves making your way to Sanremo train station, where you’ll be met by the ACLE greeting party of office folk and returning tutors. We were changed to a different hotel, Hotel Centro. Unfortunately, I cannot recommend this one. It was in an excellent location, but it had two problems that the Pollon Inn had it beat on: air-conditioning, and beds long enough for me to fit into. It seems that Gary-sized beds are a rare commodity in Italy.
After dumping our stuff at the new hotel, it was time for a get-to-know-you aperitivo at the Sax Bar. For those not familiar with the Italian tradition of aperitivo, it basically amounts to pre-dinner drinks, with small savory snacks to go with it. Bars will frequently serve the snacks for free, though it is considered good manners to continue buying drinks while you’re there.
Finally, it was time to move onto our first camps, which for us was in Como. I’ll be writing about that one in my next update-with-no-fixed-schedule.